Texas Instruments Sensortag is a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) development kit with 6 sensors (IR temperature, humidity, pressure, accelerometer, gyroscope, magnetometer) mainly destined at mobile application, which I recently tried in Linux. Until now, only it was only officially supported in iOS and Windows, but a few days after the release of Android 4.3 which adds Bluetooth Low Energy support, Texas Instruments quickly worked to release an Android App for their BLE devkit.
The annoying part is that the Android app is only available as a Windows executable (SensorTagAndroidApp-0_9_0-windows-installer_2.exe), so you’ll have not choice but to use Windows to uncompress the files. Yet the installation goes as follows:
- Copy the SensorTag.apk file (SensorTag_0_9_0.apk) to your Android 4.3 device
- Enable installation of apps from unknown sources (Settings -> Security -> Device Administration -> Unknown Sources)
- Open file manager and launch, locate the .apk file and install the app by clicking the .apk file.
I haven’t got Android 4.3 devices, so no try for me at the moment.
I’ve also noticed Texas Instruments provided some Bluetooth low energy training videos via their newsletter. Those were uploaded in May, so they still mention Android is not supported, and focus on a general introduction, and Windows based tools and iOS, but these may still be interesting, and come in 4 parts:
- Introduction to TI Bluetooth Low Energy – About 20 minutes
The presenter first explains the differences between Bluetooth low energy and classic Bluetooth (e.g. up to 50m range, lower bitrate, lower power consumption allowing devices powered by coin cells…). Then they talk about TI offerings in terms of hardware, software, kit and reference designs, include a Bluetooth LE fly mouse kit.
The video completes with a demo of the iOS app on an iPad interacting with SensorTag devkit.
- Getting Started with Bluetooth low Energy Part I – About 14 minutes
- Description of Bluetooth Low Energy. Somewhat redundant with first video at the start, but then the presenter covers more technical details: profiles and services, GATT architecture, and more.
- Demo of CC2541DK-SENSOR (Sensortag) which is exactly the same as shown in the first video…
- Getting Started with Bluetooth low Energy Part II – About 10 minutes
- Overview of TI BLE chips: CC2540 (USB) and CC2541 (I2C)
- Overview of BLE devkits:
- CC2540DK-MINI/ CC254DK-MINI
- CC2541DK-RC BLE Air Mouse
- Software and tools overview
- Getting Started with Bluetooth low Energy Part III – About 10 minutes
- CC2541DK-MINI Unboxing
- Getting started guide for CC2541DK-MINI in a Windows PC with Btool.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.
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